This is a wonderful, action-packed adventure tale about Lysander, a young Helot (the Spartan underclass) in Sparta who finds out his father is a Spartan. He then trains in the rigorous battle school, despite abuse heaped on him by the Spartan boys who despise Helots. Lysander has also had his prized pendant, the Fire of Ares stolen, and knows that one of his fellow students probably has it. (This book cover is great, but the pendant is red. Huh?) This pendant becomes crucial when a Helot uprising begins, and Lysander finds himself stuck firmly in the middle of the situation.
Boys will love this. It starts with a battle scene, and has a lot of fighting and dangerous situations. It also is a detailed depiction of life in Spartan times. This is an area not often covered, so is a welcome addition. I can't keep enough Greek and Roman books around.
This is Mr. Ford's first book. The second, Birth of a Warrior is being released in the UK this June, but I can't find the US release, which means it will be a while.
While researching this author, I also came across Michael Curtis Ford, who does Classical books for adults. I'll have to see what my husband thinks of these. Adult Classical books tend to be terribly long and include some of the Ancients, um, racier foibles.